To my tenant: STOP putting your trash in my trash can!!

I live in an economically-challenged county in WV. In light of that, we do not have county-funded trash pick up. If you want curb-side trash pick up, you have to contract with Waste Management; for $15.00 a month, they will: supply you with one garbage can; come every Wednesday morning (in my neighborhood) and collect your garbage; the first full week of every month, they will also take one large trash item (a sofa, a mattress, etc.) and once every few months, they will also notify us of a day when they will collect old tires.

Because the trash men come between 7AM and 8AM on Wednesday mornings, I put my garbage can up at the curb on Tuesday nights before I go to bed (otherwise, it “lives” on my back patio, right outside my kitchen door, where it’s convenient to put full trash bags from the kitchen in it).

BUT. . .if I don’t get my garbage can immediately after the garbage men come, one of my tenants invariably will put a bag of trash in my garbage can! I’m assuming it’s a tenant who is unwilling to contract for their own garbage pick up, so they just use whatever empty can is available.

This isn’t pit-worthy, but it gets on my freakin’ nerves. So. . .whoever you are, just knock it the fuck off, OK?

How strange that they would put it in after pick up. That necessitates you having to haul it back to your place, smell it outside your kitchen door for a week and then haul it out again.

If they’re going to be rude at least they could be polite about it.

Have you told your tenants this? They may be from somewhere else and just not know. I’ve never lived anywhere where trash pickup was done this way. In all the rental housing I’ve lived in, there was a trash can provided by the landlord that I put my trash into, and it went away.

I suspect that it’s because the tenant who’s doing it (and while I have my suspicions about who it is, I have no proof) is already in for the night by the time I put my can at the curb. In the morning, before I put my can back, it’s nice and empty. . .:mad:

All my tenants are told when they move in that trash pick-up is not included in city taxes or rent, and that they must either contract with Waste Management or make their own arrangements for hauling their trash away.

Actually, before I moved in here, it was a bigger problem: people were leaving large pieces of trash (old love-seats, other old furniture, etc) right out on the porch that runs the length of the building! Since I’ve lived here, at least that practice has stopped.

I’ve considered just putting a $15.00/mo surcharge on all rents and contracting for the pick-up myself! Two problems with this: one, several of my tenants can’t always pay all their rent every month (I’m not fast to evict; if they are making an honest effort to pay, and I know or believe they’ll catch up ‘eventually’, I usually let them stay, as long as I’m sure they’re doing the best they can); two, it would be unfair to the couple of tenants who have other arrangements (the folks in apt. 7 have a relative with a pick-up truck, who hauls all of his trash, and all of theirs, off to the dump in Parkersburg every couple of weeks).

Can you pass out a reminder memo about the trash policy? I’m giving your renter the benefit of the doubt and thinking that they are not so much inconsiderate as clueless.

If you are legally allowed you should let them know that anyone caught placing garbage in another person’s can will be subject to a $15 fine. This might encourage them to take care of the trash service themselves. Otherwise you might look into having someone with a truck come by once a month and charge $5-$10 per person to haul away bagged garbage to the dump. I’m sure there is someone with a pickup in your area looking to make some extra money!

Have you considered opening the bag and looking for evidence of origin? That is how I would deal with it. If you can determine the source, you could then call the police or kick out the tenant.

Maybe you should instigate this with the option to opt out if you get a description of alternate arrangements. There is a difference between surreptitiously using your trash can and lying to your face about their alternative arrangement.

This is an excellent idea. Next time it happens, I’m so doing this. But before it can happen again, I’ll post a notice saying this is what’s going down. . .

If it’s who I think it is, she already despises me anyway.

You could put a lease provision barring the offensive activity for future tenants.

Fortunately, WV is one of those states where, unless your tenant is HUD (has their rent paid directly to me, by the gov’t), it’s pretty easy to evict. It costs $75.00 to file eviction (which you can then turn around and sue the tenant for, but it keeps, uh, “frivolous” eviction, if you see what I mean). But the fact is, the lease pretty much says I can evict you because I don’t like the brand of shoes you wear! (Not that I would, but you get my meaning).

I’m developing a rep in this town as a “tough but fair” landlord. I’m ‘tough’ in that I don’t put up with crap. Right now I have a tenant who thinks I called Child Protective Services on her; I didn’t, but if I’d witnessed what the real reporter witnessed, I would have; I know she’s not a good mother. I’m ‘fair’ in that, as stated above, if you’re really trying, and you’re willing to work with me, I won’t kick you to the curb just because you can’t pay your rent in full every month. I like it that way. This is a tiny town. Word gets around quickly!

Costs me $42 a month for that… Mutter grumble whine.

Don’t know where you’re located, but ‘round these here parts, $15.00 is a chunk o’ change! :wink:

Will Waste Management take bags that are set at the curb next to the provided can or is it content of the cans only? If this is impeding your ability to make sure that all of your trash is taken each week, then I’d definitely institute fines, say, starting 1/1/10.

I have a landlord like that right now. He’s even helped unemployed tenants find work (like me). Decent guy - but don’t screw with him.

Our area borders a “pay to haul your trash” area, AND the city of Gary tried to balance it’s moribund budget by simply not collecting garbage on a regular basis (I’d say throw the politicians in jail, but our area is already, apparently, leading the pack in most politicians per elected office incarcerated - my county has had entire town councils arrested en masse and hauled off to jail at times. Every time that’s done a new crops of weeds spring up in their place). Actually, my building doesn’t get city pickup, so the landlord pays for the dumpster and it’s hauled off weekly by a private firm.

OK, sorry for the long intro. Our problem is that we’ve seen a sharp increase in people pulling up to our dumpster and unloading their trash. And yes, it can happen right after the weekly pickup. One option we’re considering is installing a lock on the dumpster so only tenants and the trash hauler will have the ability to get into it - but that requires cooperation from the trash hauler. As it happens, our hauler mentioned the option when contracted because this is, unfortunately, not an uncommon problem.

There’s confrontation - my landlord has zero problem with doing this, and I’ve seen him come charging out from a unit or his truck or the back yard puffed up to twice life size and roaring like a bull. That option works better for big brawny guys than diminutive females such as myself, of course, and it may not be a viable option in all circumstances.

If you can spot a license plate on a retreating dumper’s car, or otherwise identify the culprit, you might be able to get the local authorities involved. Our local municipalities view tickets and fines for littering and dumping as a source of much needed revenue and will eagerly pursue such cases. How about in your area?

If you think it’s one of your tenants causing the problem then a group dumpster/pick up as suggested above might be your best option. If you can get enough people into the group you might in a position to ask for a price break based on volume.

Well, here at the apartment building we don’t have a dumpster; the trailer park we own does have a dumpster, and it is, indeed, padlocked, for obvious reasons.

Here, each unit (ten of them) has an individual can, spray-painted with the number of the unit that is occupied; if that unit has contracted with Waste Management, their stuff gets picked up on Wednesday mornings. If not, then, no. So, padlocks are not an option.

I don’t believe it’s someone who lives outside the building who’s putting the bags of garbage in my can. I think it’s a tenant.

The town is broke, and I believe if, the next time, one of (her) bags shows up in my trash can (I can tell, because I use white trash bags, non-licensed dumper uses black bags), I will not hesitate to search the trash in the bag for evidence of who it is, and call Jerry (local police chief); whether he pursues it or not is up to him. But at least I’ll have proof of who is doing this. . .

Frankly I don’t see how your landlord can accept the fact that some tenants pay for garbage pickup and some don’t. What prevents a non-payer from leaving garbage in someone else’s can? And what if a tenant dumps garbage in a can that is never picked up? That will lead to unacceptable sanitation problems. In my neck of the woods that’s why the landlord pays for the garbage pickup for all units and that can be compensated for in the tenants’ rents. I guess one option for you is to discontinue your garbage pickup and haul your garbage to the dump when you can.

Well, I am the landlord (my husband and I own the building). The reason I accept that some people don’t pay for trash pick up is that, if at time to sign the lease, they give me reason to believe they have other means, I trust them.

As I said in a previous post, the reasons for not automatically adding trash pick-up to the rent is two-fold: one: some tenants really do have other arrangements; other tenants cannot always pay their rent in full every month, which would leave me with the excess to bear. . .

Since I moved into the building (four months ago), no one puts trash in cans that have not contracted for pick-up. This indicates to me that the one tenant (I’m sure it’s the same one repeatedly) knows who has hired out for trash pick-up.

Haven’t quite decided what to do about it, but hunting through the bag to confirm whose trash it is seems like a good start. . .

If you know when it’s happening, I’d try a stakeout first. You’d have to get up early one morning, maybe, but it beats poking in someone else’s garbage.

If someone is putting their garbage in your can it just became your garbage and you can go through it at will as far as I’m concerned.